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Carved pillars of the choultry in front of the temple of Avutaiyar Kovil, near Tanjore

Carved pillars of the choultry in front of the temple of Avutaiyar Kovil, near Tanjore

Artist: Anonymous

Medium: Pen and ink on paper

Date: 1803

Shelfmark: Add.Or.759

Item number: 759

Length: 43.5

Width: 55.5

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Topographical Print

Pen and ink drawing of the carved pillars of the choultry or pavilion in front of the temple of Avudaiyarkoil in Tamil Nadu, by an anonymous artist working in the South India/Madurai style, c. 1803. Inscribed: '86. Pillars of the Choultry before the Pagoda at Auvedayar covil. Representing the Prince Riding on' 'horseback & a God named Soobramany. Representing Veerabadra. Representing Agoremoorty. Mysore Coll. of Drawings.'

Avudaiyarkoil is situated approximately 40 km from Pudukottai in Tamil Nadu. The area is believed to date to the pre-historic period, but in its present form it mostly dates to the 17th century. The Athmanathaswami temple in Avudaiyarkoil is dedicated to the worship of Shiva as Atmanatha and has many life-size sculptures and elaborate wood carvings. The temple consists of an inner court with a mandapa (columned hall) that has elaborately carved pillars. The pyramidal tower over the entrance to the sanctuary, the carved pillars and the roof of the porch are all made of granite. This drawing depicts some of the elaborate pillars with shafts that are carved with sculptures executed almost in the round. The figures depicted are, from left to right: a rearing horse with a rider, Subhramanya standing on his vehicle the peacock, Shiva as Virabhadra the destroyer and Shiva as Agora.

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